Student of university is free to be sensational (5)
I believe the answer is:
'sensational' is the definition.
(similar in meaning)
'student of university is free' is the wordplay.
'student of university' becomes 'lu' (I can't justify this - if you can you should believe this answer much more).
'is free' becomes 'rid' (similar in meaning).
'to be' acts as a link.
Can you help me to learn more?
(Other definitions for lurid that I've seen before include "In vivid detail" , "Ghastly in appearance" , "Vivid, sensational" , "Vividly shocking" , "Melodramatically sensational" .)